November 4th, 2021
Elisabeth Shepard, Communications Director
DA Mike Schmidt announces former “Mary’s Club” landlord pled guilty to bias crime, assault, unlawful use of a weapon
PORTLAND, Ore. – Today, Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt announced that Leon Drennan, 75, pled guilty to Assault in the second degree, Unlawful Use of a Weapon, and Bias Crime in the first degree. The crimes occurred at Drennan’s property, the Stewart Hotel which used to be home to Mary’s Club, a well-known dance venue in Portland.
The case stemmed from two incidents at the Stewart Hotel, one in July of 2020 and one in August of 2020. During the incidents, Drennan displayed a firearm and used racial slurs towards the victims. In the August, 2020 incident, Drennan additionally struck the victim with the gun and with a crowbar, causing injuries. Drennan referred to the victim as the “N” word and used other profanities through the course of the incident. The victim filmed various portions of the incident on his phone which was used as evidence in this case. Portland Police arrived and put Drennan into custody.
Each victim has expressed satisfaction with the resolution of this case.
“This plea agreement accomplishes everything my client wanted out of this case. His biggest concern was that Mr. Drennan acknowledges and takes responsibility for his abhorrent behavior; he never wished him ill-will or wanted him to go to prison, nor did he want to testify at a trial.” Stated Josh Lamborn, the victim’s private attorney.
“If he ever commits another crime, this plea will also ensure he is treated as the highest level offender possible. Hopefully, that will never happen and everyone involved in this unfortunate incident can move on with their lives.” Lamborn went on.
The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office was an active participant of the Oregon Attorney General’s Hate Crimes Task Force and helped draft the language that was in Senate Bill 577. The law, which went into effect on July 15, 2019, renamed the crime of “intimidation” to “bias crime,” added gender identity to the list of protected categories, and removed the requirement that two or more people commit the crime to make it a felony in certain circumstances.
If you are the victim of a bias crime assault or you are witnessing one, immediately call 9-1-1. If you are the victim of a bias crime and the suspect is no longer present or if you have information about a bias crime committed in the past, call the non-emergency line at 503-823-3333.
The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office thanks the Portland Police Bureau for their assistance in this case.